Burnaby City Council Hits the Brakes on Removing Parkland

Happy that community came together.

Happy that new voices took leading roles, not just “environmental activists.”

Happy that Burnaby Council responded to the public outcry.

Happy that the City will take a new look, and consider other alternatives to removing parkland for an organic waste processing facility.

Yes, the initial aim to process more of our local organic waste locally was, and is, a good idea.

Just not on rare and sensitive habitat that has been almost completely wiped out on the lower Fraser River.

And not by un-dedicating parkland that was specifically dedicated for its unique values.

We share this Earth. It’s not only for people, and parks are not only for human recreation. Parks, the more natural the better, have value beyond playing fields.

I hope that we have all learned through this process.

(If you’re new to this blog, scroll down, down, to see several of my posts on the proposal to build an organic waste processing facility in unique habitat. . .)

Remembering Dad, 20 Years On

I realized tonight that tomorrow will be the 20th anniversary of my father’s passing.

I will always be awed by his work ethic and volunteerism.

Doctor, Psychiatrist, born on a homesteading farm in Saskatchewan. There were many obstacles, but he went on to graduate high school in his early 20s and continued to undergrad and grad degees, and med school.


President of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress

President of the Ukrainian World Congress

Perogie boiler/server at community events in Saskatoon 🙂.

Loving son to a mother he phoned every day when he could not visit her in person.

Likely one of the last of the generation of MDs who made house calls. Yes, real house calls. I remember riding shotgun as a kid, eh?

Dad embraced his immigrant and farm roots, honoured them, honoured his parents, his culture, his language, his religion. . .

I think the family best remembers Dad as not the doctor, not the “prez” of this or that, but as the cuddly, cheerful guy with an apron on, cooking, cleaning, providing a sympathetic ear to anyone, with any problem.

Love you, miss you. . .

Hawk, Jays, Flickers and More on SE Burnaby Walk

I got out for my daily perambulation earlier today than usual. Walked around Taylor Park and Byrne Creek Ravine Park in SE Burnaby, BC.

Birds were getting active on a sunny morning!

tagged red-tailed hawk burnaby bc
This Red-tailed Hawk was hanging around near Taylor Park Elementary. It wouldn’t let me get close enough for a good shot, but I could see that it had what appeared to be a YVR relocation tag. There’s a program to move raptors away from the airport for their, and of course, airplane safety.

I asked around my birder buddies, and several put me in touch with the folks running this program. Thanks!

steller's jay northern flicker burnaby bc
Steller’s Jay

Steller’s Jay and Northern Flicker

northern flickers drumming on street lamps
Several Northern Flickers were making their presence known by hammering on street lamps.

early morning sun taylor park burnaby bc
Sun coming over the hill at Taylor Park

2004 Burnaby Report Details Sensitive Parklands Now Under Threat

I wonder if the history of the designation of the parkland that the City of Burnaby wants to build a waste-processing facility on has been lost. A 2004 Report to Council refers to the area as environmentally sensitive.

The March 31, 2004 report is entitled “Acquisition of Environmentally Sensitive Lands Burnaby Fraser Foreshore Park.”

The report clearly states that “these environmentally significant lands have been transferred into City ownership for park and conservation purposes.”

The report speaks to three years of working with DFO to reestablish salmon rearing habitat and other work to “enhance the natural landscape to maximize wildlife values. . . ”

The report also states that “the meadow area is classified as a Tidal Freshwater Marsh as it is subject to daily tidal inundation. This wet grassland type is a relatively rare habitat type in Burnaby and the surrounding region. Since European settlement, 75% of the wetlands in the Lower Mainland have been lost. . . ”

As for the issue of habitat compensation, which is often problematic and difficult to fully achieve, the reports states “. . . it is important to note that larger natural areas have greater value than smaller segmented parcels as they are more resilient to environmental impacts.”

I hope this key report will be fully considered before the City of Burnaby continues to push the recent proposed project.

The report  can be found on the Heritage Burnaby webiste here:

Go to the Heritage Burnaby website:
And search for “Foreshore Park” with “2004” in both the “From Year” and “To Year” boxes.

Streamkeeping, sustainability, community, business, photography, books, and animals, with occasional forays into social commentary. Text and Photos © Paul Cipywnyk